David James McKay
BSc (Hons) Sport Studies
The Orchardville Society
Ulster University helped me achieve my current career success by...
providing me with a broad set of skills and knowledge that not only was relevant in my personal endeavours but also transferable into my current career as a Transitions Officer for young adults with learning difficulties.
Activities I was involved in at Ulster to enhance my employability
Having the opportunity to experience work placement was a real eye opener during my third year at University. It enabled me to put into practice the knowledge and skills I had developed during my first few years of student life.
Personally it was a great learning curve for me as I was forced to focus on softer skills that were necessary in order to sustain employment - reliability, managing feelings, prioritising, time and money management.
How placement enhanced my employability
Most employers are looking for evidence that you will be able to do the job you are applying for. My work experience provided evidence of my suitability as I was able to articulate my understanding about the world of work and discuss how my skills could be an asset.
Top 3 most significant steps on my career path so far
- Getting my first full time job was very rewarding. Although not sport related I was given the opportunity to help young people who were not able to participate in everyday activities such as sport because of their physical disabilities. This made me put value on things I took for granted.
- The first time I supported a trainee into employment was a big achievement for me and something I will always remember. Being part of an individuals struggle to gain employment is both challenging and testing but knowing that you played a role in their success is very rewarding.
- Recently wining £5000 as part of the Coca Cola fund with a group of trainees that I have sole responsibility for.
What would your advice to students be?
The majority of people who go to University leave with a degree, everyday ask yourself " What can I do today to make me different?" .
Say yes to every opportunity presented, if you don't like it at least you tried.